Seeing politics through the eyes of my children makes them seem petty and insignificant

  So because my blog is really my journal I have to write down my thoughts on the announcement we heard yesterday. I wanted to wait and hear and read as much as I could from all sources possible.

There's a couple things I would like to clarify in my head. First of all, that I really am grateful and happy to be an American. I love my country that is the foundation for my politics. I have actually read the constitution and many of the founding documents and the ideals that I identify within them are ideals that I agree and am grateful to have been raised with.

I had mixed feelings about this whole Osama Bin Laden thing. Okay, he died. From my understanding this occurred through the concerted work of many people fighting in the same cause against terrorism. Our current Commander in Chief lead this mission tactfully. I am grateful for that.

Even though I haven't agreed with some of our past Presidents or current Presidents ideas, I have this old school way of thinking that for at least the 4/8 years a President is in office he is the father of our country and is due that respect, after all like it or not we had the power to vote and elect him. Any president is firstly a man, who makes mistakes. Maybe I am extremely naive but I also think that a President deals with a lot more behind the scenes than any of us can imagine. I am very grateful to be able to say that I can disagree with our leaders but that does not entitle me to disrespect, slander/libel and hate towards them. Not Clinton, Bush 1 & 2, or Obama (the Presidents whose terms I can remember).

Back to the Osama thing, I think the purpose of the mission was not to seek revenge (at least I hope not) but to put an end to a movement rooted in hate and destruction (not that killing one man would do that). This is why I can't help to cringe at some of the comments I've heard about the most recent life to be taken because of terrorism.

He was given the chance to surrender and he chose to die, like most cowards who can't face their worldly sentence he chose to be sentenced by the creator above. That again was his choice. I feel that now it is our choice to choose to teach our children productive lessons from this and the way they see us react at the death of another human being.

What brought us to this point? It definitely was not humility. As I see people parading around, at first I felt a surge of patriotism in this idea of celebrating then I thought about it with my heart.

What lesson am I teaching my children to be jumping around celebrating a killing?

Seeing politics through the eyes of my children makes them seem petty and insignificant. How do I explain, to my child when they ask what I am celebrating?

"Well Andrei, this guy killed a lot of people so we killed him and now we are happy he died." How can I teach him tomorrow that he cannot hit a comrade because they hit him or his friends?

Clarification, I am glad that Osama will be amending his evil deeds with the Lord. His personal reign of hate on this earth has justfully ended and I am grateful for that. Now we must stay on the course and remember our children watch and hear our every move. If we want to end this cycle of hate we must start with our children.


"...everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances - to choose one's own way." - Victor Frankl

I have this personal knowledge that my children are stronger better souls than me and that in retrospect they were sent to me because I would learn to live correctly because of them. This situation has opened my eyes to many things. Most importantly the effect of my politics on my kids.

I will admit I feel a little scared about retaliation BUT this time I will not let fear guide my choices. I will keep a clear mind and hope that our leaders will do the same. This is not a victory, it is the death of a human and the continuance of a reign of terrorism that will only be passed to his successor.

Comments

IG said…
I really like this post. my opinions on government and presidents differ a bit from yours but in the end i enjoy reading your thoughts. I view politics through economics. follow the money. Presidents are limited in what they can and cant due to economic constraints in the way that the country and world economy function. so my critique of presidents aren't so much about the individual as it is about policy and the economic system. Most of president obamas critics on the right are only concerned at bashing the president in personal attacks completely ignoring any other outside factors. that's why to me republicans are nothing more that reactionary bureaucratic ideologues. they care more about their ideas and "values" than about concrete policies that will help the country. democrats too. they did the same to bush.

I also feel that dissent is an american value and a duty of its citizens. this country was born on the idea of criticizing government and challenging power structures. i for one will always push the country to be better and more equitable. there has to be accountability and actual actions behind any criticism though or else they are empty words. you thought me that. that's why im studying to be an economic theorist. i want to come up with alternatives not just talk crap haha

When it comes to the osama thing i agree with you. i was almost happy with his death. but it still felt wrong. celebrating the death of one man wont end terror, it wont make our country better and it wont make me better. i also know that in the end true peace in the middle east and the world will come from sensible policy between countries and nations not from the muzzle from an M4.

This was a great post flor. love you. your opinions are important to hear. your thoughts are personal and not tainted by ideological baggage. most peoples opinions are fabricated for their consumptions. yours are your own.
Flor, I kept the TV off at dinner last night because I didn't want to answer these same questions from my eight-year-old. Am I a coward? I'm still sorting out my own feelings. I fear what will come out of his death. More bloodshed. As I sat watching the crowd congregate around the White House and cheer the night the President made the announcement, I couldn't help but get the goosebumps. Like everybody else who's lives had been touched by the horror of 9/11, I felt a moment of relief. Celebration? No. Questions float around in my head, I see contradictions everywhere and it unsettles me. We stayed on Osama for ten years. We intervene in places to help further democracy -- justice? Why don't we help the people terrorized in the Congo, La Cote Ivoire, Mexico? ... Awesome post, Flor.
Jodi said…
Flor this is VERY well put. I could not have said it better myself.
Unknown Mami said…
Wow! You have no idea how much this post resonates with me. I was going to write something very similar and just haven't gotten around to it.

I was upset at seeing people cheering and at some of the sentiments expressed. I am a proud American and I find what happened on 9/11 deplorable, but I don't think I will ever be able to celebrate the death of a person with cheers. The loss of his life in no way makes up for the lives of over 3,000 people lost on 9/11 and I will just never be able to be happy about violence or premature death.

You expressed yourself very well in this post. I'm so glad I got to read it.
Unknown Mami said…
Wow! You have no idea how much this post resonates with me. I was going to write something very similar and just haven't gotten around to it.

I was upset at seeing people cheering and at some of the sentiments expressed. I am a proud American and I find what happened on 9/11 deplorable, but I don't think I will ever be able to celebrate the death of a person with cheers. The loss of his life in no way makes up for the lives of over 3,000 people lost on 9/11 and I will just never be able to be happy about violence or premature death.

You expressed yourself very well in this post. I'm so glad I got to read it.
IG said…
I really like this post. my opinions on government and presidents differ a bit from yours but in the end i enjoy reading your thoughts. I view politics through economics. follow the money. Presidents are limited in what they can and cant due to economic constraints in the way that the country and world economy function. so my critique of presidents aren't so much about the individual as it is about policy and the economic system. Most of president obamas critics on the right are only concerned at bashing the president in personal attacks completely ignoring any other outside factors. that's why to me republicans are nothing more that reactionary bureaucratic ideologues. they care more about their ideas and "values" than about concrete policies that will help the country. democrats too. they did the same to bush.

I also feel that dissent is an american value and a duty of its citizens. this country was born on the idea of criticizing government and challenging power structures. i for one will always push the country to be better and more equitable. there has to be accountability and actual actions behind any criticism though or else they are empty words. you thought me that. that's why im studying to be an economic theorist. i want to come up with alternatives not just talk crap haha

When it comes to the osama thing i agree with you. i was almost happy with his death. but it still felt wrong. celebrating the death of one man wont end terror, it wont make our country better and it wont make me better. i also know that in the end true peace in the middle east and the world will come from sensible policy between countries and nations not from the muzzle from an M4.

This was a great post flor. love you. your opinions are important to hear. your thoughts are personal and not tainted by ideological baggage. most peoples opinions are fabricated for their consumptions. yours are your own.

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